Jermell Charlo has been urged to stop running and finally fight Tim Tszyu to settle their differences in the ring.
Tszyu (24-0) reinstated his status as arguably the man to beat in the super welterweight division with a dominant unanimous decision win over Brian Mendoza to retain his WBO title.
It was an emphatic performance by the 28-year-old Aussie, who respected Mendoza’s power in the early stages before unleashing with powerful shots as the fight went on.
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Tszyu was made the mandatory challenger to Charlo 18 months ago but the trash talking American pulled out of a fight with injury and moved up divisions to chase a big payday against Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.
In the meantime, Tszyu has remained active, winning all three of his fights this year against Tony Harrison, Carlos Ocampo and Mendoza in different but equally impressive fashion.
America has finally sat up and taken notice, with the consensus that the time is now for Charlo to put his ego on the line and step in the ring with Tszyu in a unification title fight.
Former boxing world champion Shakur Stevenson posted on X: “I was wrong bout Tim Tszyu he looked better then I thought he was last night.”
Boxing commentator Dan Canobbio said: “I think Jermell Charlo versus Tim Tszyu is the next fight for both guys.
“For Charlo, it could help restore his reputation, help restore his career. For Tszyu, it’s the marquee win he’s been looking for. These two have been talking trash for weeks, years.”
The Boxing Kingdom account posted: “Tim Tszyu is the man to beat at 154! (pounds).”
Fox Sports News’ Cody Kaye said: “Has to be the elite of the elite for Tszyu now. Only the Canelo’s of the world trouble this guy. And even then I’m not sure. Makes great fighters sh*t themselves.”
Legendary boxing trainer Teddy Atlas posted: “Tszyu is nothing fancy, very conventional and focused approach. Him & Charlo very interesting. Both good offensively.”
ESPN’s Mike Coppinger said: “Strong performance from Tim Tszyu with the unanimous decision victory over Brian Mendoza (116-112, 116-111 and 117-111.) He’s must-see TV. “Never takes a step backward. Methodical pressure. Impressive win over a very tough and game Brian Mendoza. Tszyu’s power is different.”
Sports broadcaster Corbin Middlemas added: “Not saying he’s it, but Tim Tszyu should be in the fighter of the year conversation. Instead of waiting for Charlo, risked it all against 3 top guys in the division and enhanced his reputation in each.”
Who will Tim Tszyu fight next?
Charlo has been ordered to face IBF mandatory Bakhram Murtazaliev next, with the pair given until 9 November to reach a deal. Charlo holds the IBF, WBC and WBA belts while Tszyu holds the WBO belt.
Whoever Tszyu fights next, it’s likely to be in Las Vegas after he confirmed the victory over Mendoza would be his last fight on home soil for some time.
His camp has already declared Charlo has “had his chance”, but Tszyu is still keen on fighting his foe after trading barbs with him for years.
But the undefeated Tszyu already has his sights set on some of the biggest names in boxing including Errol Spence, Alvarez and pound for pound king Terence Crawford.
T-shirts featuring his boxing “hit list” are bound to make a few dollars in merchandise sales for Team Tszyu.
If a fight with Charlo never eventuates, a clash with Spence would be the likely next option and Tszyu’s best chance of victory.
Former world champion Shawn Porter sung Tszyu’s praises in commentary on Main Event but believes he isn’t at the level of Crawford and Alvarez just yet.
“That Tim Tszyu does not beat Terence Crawford. He needs more defence and a little more footwork. Those are intangibles you’ve just got to have against Terence Crawford,” Porter said.
“And he’s not on Canelo’s radar, so we don’t really need to talk about that fight. But (with Canelo fighting) at 168 (pounds) … if Tim goes up to 168 he’s going to lack the power and strength needed to fend off a Canelo for 12 consecutive rounds.
“But outside of that though, you guys have got a real champion here.”